Google search is the biggest and most used search engine. Google search is also a medium which Google uses to collects a lot of information about its users. From basic information like name and birthday to complete history of our searches, clicks, locations, and devices we use to login.
The main reason for such aggressive data collection is to create a personalized user experience, but at the same time, it is quite advantageous for the company to increase revenue by displaying ads in accordance with a person’s interests.
Widespread concern about data sharing has alarmed many of us into wanting to protect our privacy more than ever, thats where DuckDuckGo comes in.
HOW DOES DUCKDUCKGO WORK?
When you click on links from Google and Bing, even in private mode, the search terms are sent to the site you’re visiting in the HTTP referrer header. When you visit that site, your computer automatically shares information, such as your IP address. This information can be used to identify you.
DuckDuckGo calls this “search leakage” and prevents it from happening by default on its search results. Instead, when you click on a link on the site it redirects that request in such a way to prevent it from sending your search terms to other sites. The sites know that you visited them, but they don’t know what search you entered beforehand, nor can they use personal information to identify you.
DuckDuckGo additionally offers an encrypted version that automatically changes links from a number of major sites to point to the encrypted versions, including Wikipedia, Facebook, Twitter, and Amazon.
Another way to prevent search leakage is to use a proxy. DuckDuckGo operates a so-called Tor exit enclave, which means you can get end-to-end anonymous and encrypted searching. Entering proxy domain into DuckDuckGo will automatically route you through a proxy but proxies can be slow, and free proxies (like the ones DuckDuckGo use) are funded by advertising.
Ultimately, DuckDuckGo leaves the choice of protection to the user. You can deviate from the default on its settings page by toggling the redirect, or in the address bar settings.